FEASTLY BEETS

Seems people either love them or hate them, judging from the comments on my previous post. I personally adore them in any form and they make a fascinating topic for research, although they don’t inspire poetry …

Beetroots are a rich source of potent antioxidants and nutrients, including magnesium, sodium, potassium and vitamin C, and betaine, which is important for cardiovascular health. It functions by acting with other nutrients to reduce the concentration of homocysteine, a homologue of the naturally occurring amino acid cysteine, which can be harmful to blood vessels and thus contribute to the development of heart disease, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease. Betaine functions in conjunction with S-adenosylmethionine, folic acid, and vitamins B6 and B12 to carry out this function.

Additionally, several preliminary studies on both rats and humans have shown betaine may protect against liver disease, particularly the build up of fatty deposits in the liver caused by alcohol abuse, protein deficiency, or diabetes, among other causes. The nutrient also helps individuals with hypochlorhydria, a condition causing abnormally low levels of stomach acid, by increasing stomach acidity.

Beetroot juice has been shown to lower blood pressure and thus help prevent cardiovascular problems. Research published in the American Heart Association journal Hypertension showed drinking 500 ml of beetroot juice led to a reduction in blood pressure within one hour. The reduction was more pronounced after three to four hours, and was measurable up to 24 hours after drinking the juice. The effect is attributed to the high nitrate content of the beetroot. The study correlated high nitrate concentrations in the blood following ingestion of the beetroot juice and the drop in blood pressure. Dietary nitrate, such as that found in the beetroot, is thought to be a source for the biological messenger nitric oxide, which is used by the endothelium to signal smooth muscle, triggering it to relax. This induces vasodilation and increased blood flow.

Other studies have found the positive effects beetroot juice can have on human exercise and performances. In studies conducted by theExeterUniversity, scientists found cyclists who drank a half-litre of beetroot juice several hours before setting off were able to ride up to 20 per cent longer than those who drank a placebo blackcurrant juice.

It is a rich source of the element boron. Field Marshal Montgomery is reputed to have exhorted his troops to ‘take favours in the beetroot fields’, a euphemism for visiting prostitutes.

Souce: Wikipedia.

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56 thoughts on “FEASTLY BEETS

  1. oh dear, they weren’t wild beetroot running amock among your kitchen utensils. Some pretty well tamed ones it seems.

    What a pity I don’t like beetroot. It sounds so good for one.

  2. An Aussie burger ain’t Aussie unless it has beetroot on it (I don’t have a clue why) – I use to hate them until I came to live here and now I love them, specially baby beets freshly roasted

  3. Pray tell, my friend, Cin, what prompts you to place boron in the same paragraph as prostitutes? I have been taking boron faithfully for nearly a year as a replacement for the deadly meds for Osteo. that only make the bones denser but horrifically brittle. Are you saying that if I exercised a little more attention to – harumph – you know – I would not have osteo? :D Please say yes!

  4. I grew up with beets as a staple on the dinner table…I don’t see them much anymore unless I go back home. I recently went to this really cool giant supernmarket when I was out of town and they had yellow beets. They were shaped kind of weird and were funny looking, but I was told they were really sweet, almost a mango taste.

  5. Thank you for all this beneficial information. I don’t think I’ve ever tasted anything with beetroot juice in it. Does it taste anything like beets? We LOVE beets, fresh beets, not canned beets! I prepare them myself. I guess you are right that its either love or hate. I, too, have found that people who like beets really like them, and people who don’t, really don’t. Blessings to you, Cindy…

  6. I love beets! The roots and the greens! Yummy!

    And it’s one of the few vegetables that doesn’t lose its taste and texture in the canning process. So I always keep a few cans in the pantry.

  7. Oh, cin – so glad you love beets,feel free to love them for me. I had to laugh – I met a blind date for coffee once. I ordered espresso, he ordered beet juice. The guy behind the counter said, “Dude, straight beet juice?” Blind nodded. Counter guy “Dude, do you know what that will do to you?” Blind nods. Twenty minutes later, he ran for the loo. I ran for my car and escaped Beet Man.

  8. I’m with you, Cin, I love beets any which way. And thanks for this informative post (brilliant title, btw) – it’s always good to know that what I love, loves me back. ;)

  9. I love cooking with these beets, love the colours it throws, love peeling them & cutting them….. taste though? Not so much! BUT…, oh yes, there is a but…, after reading all these marvellous things a good old beet will do…., well then., I do believe I have to get over myself & into the beets :)

  10. Pingback: OH MY DARLING CLEMENGOLD … « The only Cin

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